Lessons for Anwar Ibrahim from Liverpool’s Premiership victory

Just like Liverpool, Datuk Seri Anwar Ibrahim has endured many false dawns. Similar to the English club, the PKR leader always insists “this is his year”.

The Reds had to deal with Sir Alex Ferguson for decades while Anwar has Tun Dr Mahathir Mohamad stopping him from being on the perch.

Even this year, when Anwar believed the premiership was finally within grasp, Dr Mahathir once again prevented him from ascending the throne by resigning as Prime Minister, resulting in the collapse of Pakatan Harapan.

This enabled Tan Sri Muhyiddin Yassin to come in as the 8th Prime Minister, once again denying Anwar at the last minute.

While it has taken Liverpool 30 years to finally be crowned champions of the Premier League this morning, Anwar has been waiting 22 years and is no nearer to the summit.

Like or loathe the club, the one factor that contributed to Liverpool’s success was that it had a good leader: Jurgen Klopp.

There were frustrating moments and a near miss for the team last season. But Klopp continued motivating his exceptionally talented footballers.

Pakatan Harapan, instead, seems to have many people wanting to play leader, much to the frustration of the party supporters and those who voted for change in the last general election.

Liverpool’s German leader said: “Everyone must be patient enough to be successful.” Anwar needs to be patient if he is indeed leader material.

A tearful Klopp also dedicated the win to Steven Gerrard and Sir Kenny Dalglish. Here’s another lesson for Anwar – to credit those who have always been part of the struggle.

Liverpool fans have been patiently loyal for three decades, supporting the team through good and bad times. Players, just like politicians, come and go but it is the supporters who keep the momentum in place.

While Liverpool and Manchester United fans continue to take jibes at one another, they should be reminded how players from both sides rigged a game to help United avoid relegation. The infamous match, dubbed ‘The 1915 Good Friday’ betting scandal saw Manchester winning 2-0.

The Football Association then said the players had “sought to undermine the whole fabric of the game and discredit its honesty and fairness” – pretty much resembling the politics in Malaysia today.

The 1915 scandal showed how arch rivals can work towards a common goal.

Perhaps a lesson for Anwar and Dr Mahathir?

Dr Mahathir, in an interview published in today’s Asia Times, said Anwar has certain support but there are those who are so strongly against him.

“I fear there will be no majority if it depends on him alone. I would like to help him,” said Dr Mahathir.

So should Anwar, who in 2018 revealed he is a Manchester United supporter, consider taking up Dr Mahathir’s offer and avoid being known as “forever PM in waiting”.

Or will he finally get his wish after waiting close to 30 years?

Meanwhile, here are the other highlights in today’s The News Normal:

SPAS, TUITION CENTRES TO RESUME OPERATIONS

Defence Minister Datuk Seri Ismail Sabri Yaakob announced spas, wellness centres and foot reflexology centres will be allowed to resume operations from July 1. However, only Malaysians are allowed to work in these establishments. Trade and travel fairs will also resume next month.

Tuition centres, special needs schools and private educational institutions will also be allowed to open their doors but the exact date and standard operating procedure will be announced by the Education Ministry soon.

ASEAN TRAVEL BUBBLE 

Muhyiddin today called on Asean nations to formulate cohesive plans to implement measures for a “travel bubble” among member states with low Covid-19 cases.

He said the plan will help create jobs and revitalise economies in the region.

BE MORE AGGRESSIVE IN PROTECTING JOBS, PH TELLS GOVT

Pakatan Harapan urges the government to be more aggressive and imaginative in protecting jobs amid the worsening economic situation in Malaysia. PH in a statement this evening proposed to greatly expand the public health and public education systems within the next two years.

While the expansion will strengthen the public health system and provide additional education opportunities for more Malaysians, PH said it will also create more jobs as well at a time when the private sector is laying off workers.

“If implemented, this proposal will require new hiring of nurses, doctors, teachers, lab administrators, teaching assistants, lecturers and researchers, among others.”